Today at Graceview we were saying a final goodbye to one of the pillars of our community of faith. Though short in stature, Ann Wright was a giant. So many of our members have told me that she was the first to welcome them to the church. So many have told me how she was THE person to go to for a reception of any kind at the church. I got to know her at Bible Studies and Advent lunches, where she would speak about her faith with sensitivity and wisdom.

Oh, and I must tell you – she made the most magical shortbread. She gave me some at an advent lunch a couple of years ago. I wasn’t feeling well, my stomach was unsettled. So I took it home and late that afternoon I decided to have a piece (because even with an upset tummy, my love of shortbread is a powerful thing). And you know what? Ann’s shortbread cured me. I swear – it was magical.

Saying goodbye to a beloved member is always difficult. Saying goodbye during a pandemic has an added layer of grief and pain. We can’t gather in the numbers we normally would. We can’t share food and conversation after the service. It’s just hard.

So I was glad to come across this today:

In the midst of a year that feels like a mess, God is still at work. And he is writing a message in you and in me that probably could not have come about any other way. It doesn’t make the mess go away, but understanding that the mess has a purpose may just give us strength to get through it.

Until tomorrow, dear friends, trust that God is at work, writing a message in your life.